Dubai teen shows the way in e-waste fight

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Thirteen-year-old has inspired recycling efforts in various communities and has a big following on social media

Dubai teen shows the way in e-waste fight

Dubai, June 18- While the practice of recycling general waste is catching on among Dubai residents, many people are unaware of the harmful impact of storing electronic waste in their homes.

Grade eight student, Riva Tulpule, 13, from India has made it her mission to spread the message of recycling and is collecting e-waste from across Dubai communities.

 “I started this initiative last year 2017 under the name ‘WeCare’ where I collected over 1 tonne of e-waste. I did not have a target in mind this year but since I have already crossed 1 tonne in two and a half weeks,” the youngster said as she set out a Ramadan target earlier this month of “at least 1.5 tonnes”.

Today, Tulpule is not only doing her part to help the environment, but has reached over 80,000 people through her informative videos, and has more than 20,000 followers on her social media pages.

There is a lot of e-waste being generated each day due to the changing technology, with many people unaware of the harms of storing old outdated electronic items in their homes, she explained.

“Over the years, these items emit harmful gases and are harmful to our health. If they are disposed in the garbage, they end up in landfills where the harmful chemicals seep into our ground and the gases emitted pollute the environment,” Tulpule says.

While the public focus remains on recycling plastic and paper, e-waste is also a growing problem in today’s society.

Tulpule has received support and messages from various communities in Dubai, and is continuously coordinating with families who want to recycle their e-waste.

“I schedule a few drives after school hours with the help of my mother to pick up the e-waste from families. All the collected e-waste is bought home and placed in special bins in my backyard, until I take them to the recycling centre at the end of each week,” said Tulpule.

This year, Tulpule partnered with Madeenat Al Nokhba recycling centre after visiting their facility. The centre recycles everything from electronic waste to liquid waste, tube lights, bulbs and even hygiene products.

Tulpule’s efforts were also recognised by the Indian Consulate, after they viewed her awareness video.

“They have supported my initiative by giving me all the e-waste they had at the consulate. I met the Council General Mr Vipul and I was extremely delighted to receive a pat on the back from him for all the work I have done so far,” she said.

Tulpule aims to continue her mission to help the city she lives in, with the hope that “this small wave of awareness will become a big tsunami one day.”

Courtesy: Gulf News

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